Bicycle Queensland CEO Anne Savage.
Bicycle Queensland CEO Anne Savage. AAP - Steve Pohlner

Bicycle Queensland welcomes reforms made in NSW

WITHOUT action, risk for the most vulnerable road users will only escalate.

Last year 27 road fatalities were caused by driver distraction and 75 per cent of Queensland drivers admit to using mobile phones while driving.

Bicycle Queensland chief executive officer Anne Savage welcomed reforms by the NSW Government.

"Passengers, pedestrians, and bike riders combined accounted for 43 per cent of deaths on Australian roads since 1989 - almost equal to driver deaths, which make up 45 per cent of crash fatalities,” she said.

"Of particular concern to Bicycle Queensland, serious injury crashes among cyclists have been increasing by about eight per cent every year and are higher today than they were five or 10 years ago.

"Cyclists are overrepresented in casualty counts, making up about three per cent of all road fatalities and 15 per cent of all road hospitalisations, with the vulnerable road user group accounting for 38 per cent of the overall road toll in Queensland last year.”

"Joint efforts are needed to examine new ways of preventing all deaths on our roads, including the Queensland Government's consideration of Bicycle Queensland has called for a Road Safety and Healthy Travel Commission to investigate after analysis of road crashes reported to the police has found nearly 800 cyclists are injured on Queensland roads each year, costing the economy over $220 million annually.

"In terms of the overall percentage increase, Queensland is forecast to experience the third highest fatality increase of all Australian states, just behind Western Australia and the Northern Territory, where traffic growth is expected to be greater than the rest of Australia,” Ms Savage said.

"Urgent action is needed to end the rising death toll caused by driver distraction and mobile phone use.”